Version Reviewed: 1.1
App Reviewed on: iPad 3
Graphics / Sound Rating:
Replay Value Rating:
Deadly Bullet is set in a dystopian future where corrupt police officers walk the streets and the only thing that can truly set someone free is a bullet. That may or may not be true, I just thought it sounded cool.
It's close enough to the premise here though, since the aim of Deadly Bullet is to take down as many bad guys with a single bullet as possible. Each bullet can be manipulated by the player as they float above the map from their birds-eye viewpoint. To turn, they need to tap on either side of the screen, following the directional arrows to their nearest target. The controls take some getting used to, so the added screen real estate of the iPad definitely helps when making those last minute turns away from danger.
With the 3 bullets available, players must put down all of the police officers in each level, watching as each one explodes in a satisfying burst of gore. It's not easy by any means, particularly due to the sensitive controls and actual pace of the bullet itself. Power-ups consist of the Split Bullet (which launches a look-a-like bullet to take care of the nearest enemy), the Ultrafreeze (which slows down time), and the Mobsucker (which literally sucks enemies in towards their doom); all of which help provide a bit of a relief from the action. Enemies are often on the move, laying motion-sensitive mines or shooting tracking missiles at the player, so it can definitely become chaotic at times.
The cel-shaded graphics and neon color accents lend a futuristic look to the game, while the synth-heavy soundtrack adds a hypnotic beat and a sense of urgency to gameplay. The way the buildings move in relation to the bullet's position is also impressive. There are currently 3 locations available, each of which contain 3 stages that are repeated until Game Over. There is also a Score Attack mode for leaderboard lovers. Still, there are only 3 levels, which isn't quite enough to stop the onset of déjà vu - especially when a stage has been repeated a handful of times in the same sitting.
Ultimately, Deadly Bullet feels like something new and exciting, even if on paper it appears to be little more than a futuristic version of Snake. There's a definite learning curve, but by the time players have realized they've surpassed it they'll already be playing it for the umpteenth time, and that's the point at the end of the day.